February 14, 2019

In most professions, men hold the vast majority of CEO positions. It’s no exception in public relations, where current research shows that nearly 80 percent of chief executives are male. In an industry that is predominantly women, the leadership gap is especially pronounced.

Studies point to several factors impacting women’s rise to the C-suite, including work-life practices, reduced likelihood to receive milestone promotions or pay increases, and unconscious biases.

A new study by KPMG and the Institute for Public Relations (IPR), “Mind the Gap: Women’s Leadership in Public Relations,” explores the current state of the PR and communications profession, and what can be done to level the playing field for more women to reach leadership positions.

This includes identifying how companies and the industry can support women to achieve senior roles, and practical actions that mid-level women can take to navigate their careers.

Key findings of the study include:

  •     Sexism still persists in the workplace; some women felt excluded from the “boys club” and encountered stereotypes in the workplace.
  •     Almost no male respondents said they had personally experienced discrimination in the workplace, while nearly all women said they had.
  •     Informal mentorships may work better than formal mentorship programs.
  •     HR policies were an opportunity for change—imbalanced policies create an imbalanced playing field.
  •     Work-life fit is an issue for both men and women who said they always felt pressure to be “on.”
  •     Both womeOKn and men perceived an industry pay gap.

Mind the Gap co-authors Dr. Tina McCorkindale, Megan Dubrowski and Rebecca Rickert discuss what can be done to help more women advance to leadership roles.
Media kit

To download report CLICK HERE.



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